And so it starts. You get married, you have a baby. You take on the task of…. becoming a parent. One that you hope will do everything right and make no mistakes along the way. Eh em.
That is a long 18 years. And then, they move out of your house. Onto something bigger, something better. Something that will inspire them to go and just be GREAT! Or does it end like this? Happy go lucky parenting that just fills your heart with bliss?
Did you know that the average parent actually has a parenting style? Hmm, I didn’t either. It makes perfect sense though. Why? You must say? Let’s take a look.
**Note-These Scenarios are depicted as scenarios. In no way do they represent real-life people or situations. Merely to note examples of each parenting style.
Parenting Style #1- Permissive Parenting
Meet Shelly and Steve. They have 3 kids, 2 in elementary and one in middle school. They both enjoy spending ample time with their kids but they also have a life outside of home life that needs to be tended to. AKA Work, friends, social media. In the meantime, Shelly and Steve’s kids pretty much do what they want to do.
Their kids like to run around the store putting random items in the cart and often get into trouble at school. When it comes time for discipline the hesitant Shelly and Steve, allow the unruly behavior. Only to be caught back up in their social life. Shelly and Steve do not have a set bedtime or any type of rules in the home and They allow the children to do what they want.
Although loving in nature Shelly and Steve let their children decide things for themselves and offer little to no guidance. They are “yes” parents who avoid saying no at all costs. Shelly and Steve are more of a friend to their children and loves to be known as the “cool parents” to their kid’s friends.
Permissive Parenting Pro’s and Con’s
Permissive parenting is not uncommon. Generally speaking, permissive parenting can happen later in life when kids get older. Permissive parenting is not a bad type of parenting per se and many parents do fall in this category at some point. Let’s go over some permissive parenting pros and con’s.
- Creativity- While kids are growing up, permissive parenting allows for kids to be more creative in their lives.
- Self Assurance- Kids with permissive parenting styles often have a high sense of self-assurance. Or rather they can do most anything without guidance.
Defiance- Many kids may lash out due to lack of parenting and often kids may find themselves in trouble or in tough situations.
Lack of Coping Skills- Because kids turn to guidance on so many different issues if there is no guidance in their lives they may not know how to cope with a certain situation at school or otherwise.
Lack of Respect- respecting your parents is always taught by the parent. Kids do not learn respect for parents because the parenting aspect in this role is missing. Learning to say no to your kids is something that paves the road for success later on in life. There is a really great article on Saying No to your Kids that I highly recommend. Check out the article here!
Parenting Style #2- Authoritarian Parenting
Meet Cindy and Tom. Cindy and Tom work full time and have one child who is in high school and they both hold a very busy schedule. Cindy and Tom love their child but they don’t have time for much. So she and her husband set very strict rules for what needs to be taken care of in their absence.
Cindy and Tom set boundaries for who their child can see and date. She offers guidance on life but allows her child to make their own decisions on some things. Cindy and Tom are very rule-oriented and have also incorporated chores and strict curfews.
Although they both love their child they understand the fact that children need some form of guidance from parents. Cindy and Tom take discipline seriously and mistakes do not go unnoticed. They do not allow their child to interfere with rule-setting and do not allow for change on punishment.
Authoritarian Parenting Pro’s and Con’s
While Authoritarian parenting may seem like a harsh way to parents, this type of parenting is more common among parents nowadays. Of course we all want our children to behave and authoritarian parenting styles do just that.
Pro’s: Well behaved- Authoritarian parenting sets its sights on strict parenting and are very rule-oriented. Children tend to be well behaved and often have very high mannerisms when around other people.
Goal Focused- Children are expected to be focused on goals IE; good academic standing, sports, and college. These children usually excel after they graduate from high school and become very successful.
Safety Oriented- Many parents at a young age stress the importance of safety. Children with authoritarian parents are more safety-conscious and know there are boundaries. They know whether or not a situation is right or wrong. And they will be able to express concern over a safety conflict.
Rebellion – At no surprise, children with strict rules in place, at some point will rebel/act out against their parents. Tight rules can make a child feel like they have no freedom. The backlash of this would be rebellion.
Separation from parents at an older age – It is no surprise here, that kids with authoritarian type parents will separate from their parents later in life. Having a tight strain on kids at an early age will make kids want to have freedom later in life. IE; college, moving away.
Parenting Style #3-Uninvolved Parenting
To save grace for this example we will simply say that uninvolved parenting is just as it sounds. Uninvolved. Parents are present but do not care about punishment, guidance, or any type of communication.
Children are usually able to do what they want, when they want and get away with a lot of things. Parenting is not nurturing in this environment and children just “exist”. Mostly, parents do not know how to be a parent or are unsure of what to do for their children.
There are many cons to this type of parenting, too many to list here. This type of parenting is simply put, disruptive to a child’s growth pattern. You can read more about uninvolved parenting here.
Parenting Style #4- Authoritative
Meet Stacy and Jim. Stacy and Jim are your run of the mill parents. They both work full-time jobs but also have responsibilities of parenting like taking the kids to and from school, homework, etc. They are very supportive of these activities but they also expect structure.
Stacy and Jim instill chores, and responsibilities for each child and expect them to be completed. While very loving in nature they respect the fact that “kids will be kids”. Stacy and Jim find time throughout their week to help their kids with school work and extracurricular activities.
Discipline in the home exists if boundaries lines are crossed. Their kids respect their parents and understand the need for teaching and learning.
Authoritative Parenting Pro’s and Con’s
The authoritarian parent is somewhat simplistic in nature. They understand that their kids have needs and will make mistakes. But they also know that there needs to be guidance in a child’s life in order to have some form of order.
Understand Boundaries – Parents who are authoritative in nature teach boundaries at a young age. Kids learn to understand that there can be consequences to actions. This in turn teaches kids the power of children making the right choices.
Encourage expression – This type of parenting encourages expression from their child. They allow each child to be able to express his/her opinion openly when needed. They also encourage children to openly express themselves with the use of sports, arts, or other creative expressions.
Problem Solving – Problem-solving in the authoritative parenting style is very much encouraged. When taught at a young age children learn how to independently solve problems on their own with the guidance of their parents.
While there are many pros to this type of parenting, psychologists around the world agree that authoritative parenting is in fact the most celebrated type of parenting. There are not many drawbacks that can be considered with authoritarian parenting.
Choosing a Parenting Style
While there are 4 styles of parenting listed here, many parents often parent around all four styles. Choosing a parenting style doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, you may not have a certain parenting style and that is ok.
You put a lot of effort into raising happy, healthy kids. While it is important to make sure parenting style supports healthy growth, there is no wrong style to parenting. Don’t feel panicked if one day you are more permissive than authoritative. It’s ok. We all have a different parenting style and many of us do in fact fall into one of the above categories.
And while one way may work for you, doing authoritarian parenting may work better for Cindy and Tom. We all make mistakes and overcoming those mistakes with motherhood can help you grow. I read a really great article on making mistakes as a mom. We all do it and it is ok! With dedication and a positive attitude being the best parent you can be is more important to your Childs well being than you can imagine.